In addition to your personalized strength training plan, our Sport Performance team created a library of Training Extras you can use to enhance and customize your training. These extras are entirely optional — whether you choose to use them, and how you choose to implement them, is completely up to you. For those interested in leveraging these routines, this article will guide you through some recommended ways to utilize this content effectively.
What are Training Extras?
There are 5 categories of Training Extras you can implement in addition to your strength training sessions: warm-ups, primers, finishers, SAQ drills, and conditioning. We'll walk you through each category to give you a better sense of when and how to use them.
Volt highly recommends completing a dynamic warm-up before each and every training session. These warm-ups are automatically presented to athletes after tapping the “Start Workout” button, before the workout is generated. There are several time- and equipment-based options to ensure athletes are properly prepared for strength training. Warm-ups can also be accessed in the Training Extras section on athlete home page, under Overview.
Primers are targeted routines designed to be performed after your warm-up, but before your strength training session, to neuromuscularly prime and prepare the body for training. Primers can also be utilized on off days for active recovery or mobility purposes. You'll find the primers in the Training Extras section in the Volt app, after Warm-ups.
Finishers are short routines designed to be performed directly after your strength training session to help develop targeted adaptations. You can implement finishers to emphasize a specific training adaptation needed for your sport (like grip strength), or when extra work is needed in specific areas such as upper or lower body mobility.
SAQ stands for Speed, Agilility, and Quickness. These short routines contain skill-based drills designed to progressively improve an athlete’s explosive movement abilities. Perform any SAQ drills immediately following your warm-up, but before your strength training session (or conditioning session), for best results. Note: SAQ drills do not produce the same physiological adaptations as a conditioning plan — think skills, not cardiovascular fitness. There are 6 specific drills in each tier, and 3 tiers of SAQ drills, increasing in difficulty. We recommend choosing 2 drills per session.
Most sports have a corresponding 12-week conditioning plan designed to be implemented in conjunction with the strength training program during the off-season (Preparatory phase). If you are performing a conditioning session on the same day as a Volt strength training session, prioritize the most power-dependent session first — ex: if you have a maximal speed sprint session on your conditioning plan, perform that before your strength workout. But if you have a lower-intensity aerobic capacity session, perform that after your strength workout.
Sports in which conditioning comprises the actual sport practice do not have an accompanying conditioning plan. Cross Country, Track, Crew, Swimming, Cycling, and Triathlon are a few examples of sports where conditioning is essentially the sport itself, making a conditioning plan redundant.
We recommend starting your conditioning plan 12 weeks from your season start date for best results.
Great to see @dickinsonfieldhockey getting after it in the weight room! #AMRAP (as many reps as possible) finishers help build anaerobic capacity, so players can perform better when fatigued. Keep it up #VoltFamily!! • • • #Repost from @dickinsonfieldhockey - @voltathletics nothing beats a #AMRAP finisher! #DCFH
How Do I Use Training Extras?
While you could theoretically perform a warm-up, SAQ, primer, strength training session, conditioning, and finisher all in one workout, Volt does NOT recommend this. Utilizing workout add-ons strategically, rather than overloading your athletes with volume, will better help you accomplish your training goals. Below are some recommendations for how you might utilize 1-3 add-ons within a given training day.
Regular Training Days
WARM-UP + WORKOUT: On any day you perform a Volt strength training session, perform a warm-up beforehand. Never skip your warm-up!
WARM-UP + PRIMER + WORKOUT: Add a primer to your regular workout routine to target specific joints (like the shoulder) or movement patterns (like jump-landing mechanics).
WARM-UP + WORKOUT + FINISHER: Add a finisher to your regular workout routine to target specific adaptations (like Metabolic Conditioning or Core Strength).
WARM-UP + PRIMER + WORKOUT + FINISHER: Add a primer and finisher to your regular workout routine to target specific muscle groups and training adaptations. If you choose this option, make sure you aren’t working to failure or exhaustion.
Training Days with a Speed Focus
WARM-UP + SAQ + WORKOUT: On days you want to focus on explosive capabilities, like during a Power training block, try some SAQ drills before your workout.
WARM-UP + SAQ + PRIMER + WORKOUT: On days you want to focus on explosive capabilities AND have extra time to train, add a primer after your SAQ drills. Best when performed with primers that build on movement patterns practiced in SAQs (like Jump Landing Mechanics and Plyometrics).
WARM-UP + SAQ + WORKOUT + FINISHER: On days you want to focus on explosive capabilities AND have extra time to train, add a finisher. Best when performed with a lower-intensity finisher for a cool-down effect (like Mobility or Static Stretching), or with a finisher that continues training speed and agility (like Metabolic Conditioning).
Training Days with a Conditioning Focus
WARM-UP + CONDITIONING + WORKOUT: If your scheduled conditioning session is high-intensity (ex: speed work), perform it directly before a strength training session for best results.
WARM-UP + WORKOUT + CONDITIONING (2+ HOURS LATER): If your scheduled conditioning session is lower-intensity (ex: aerobic capacity work), perform it after your strength training session for best results.
WARM-UP + WORKOUT + PRIMER (2 HOURS LATER) + CONDITIONING: Try performing a targeted primer before your conditioning session as an extended warm-up (ALWAYS warm up properly before a conditioning session). We recommend Plyometrics, Jump Landing Mechanics, or Knee Stability primers for best results.
PRIMER + CONDITIONING: Perform a targeted primer before a conditioning session as an extended warm-up. We recommend Plyometrics, Jump Landing Mechanics, or Knee Stability primers for best results.
SAQ + CONDITIONING: Supplement your aerobic or anaerobic conditioning session with some targeted speed and agility work beforehand. If you perform 2 SAQ drills before each conditioning session, you can align all 3 tiers of SAQs with your 12-week conditioning plan.
CONDITIONING + FINISHER: Perform a finisher directly after a conditioning session to create a longer training session. We recommend Core Strength, Mobility, or Static Stretching finishers for best results.
Active Recovery Days
UPPER-BODY MOBILITY + LOWER-BODY MOBILITY FINISHERS: Pair both mobility finishers for a low-intensity active rest session.
KNEE HEALTH + LOWER-BODY MOBILITY FINISHER: For a low-intensity workout focused on the lower body.
SHOULDER HEALTH PRIMER + UPPER-BODY MOBILITY FINISHER: For a low-intensity workout focused on the upper body.
It's Up to You!
We created Training Extras to give you endless customization options when it comes to your training. Ultimately, the decision on if, how, and when to use them is entirely up to you.
If you have any questions about workout add-ons, please contact your designated CSCS-certified Strength Coach Consultant!
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